Friday, July 04, 2008

Roundup on women and media (by Suzie)

        Recently, I blogged about whether we can simply “add women and stir.” That concept came back to me as I was reading a news release from the International Women’s Media Foundation, which is honoring women who have continued coverage despite harsh conditions and death threats.
        These women deserve to be honored. But it’s not enough to honor women who risk their lives to do what men do. We also must value women who write about the stuff of women’s lives, the sorts of stories that get little coverage in mainstream media. The foundation helps make this possible by offering training and other resources.
          On the subject of female journalists who enter male-dominated areas: "Gillian Anderson will star in and produce a biopic of Martha Gellhorn, a trailblazing female war correspondent who covered conflicts from the Spanish Civil War to Vietnam," according to Variety. Can't wait for this? Then I hope you've already seen the movie about Irish journalist Veronica Guerin.
          (By the way, I'm always amused when writers feel the need to modify a job title with "female" even though it should be obvious from the context. I think readers can figure out that Gellhorn was a female correspondent by her name and the fact that she's being portrayed by a woman.)          
          I got the link on Gellhorn, as well as a lot of other news, from the Women's Media Center. It co-sponsored a forum titled "From Soundbites to Solutions: Bias, Punditry and the Press in the 2008 Election." It has video on its Web site.
          An article on the forum notes that women comprised 91 percent of the audience. Although women have a lot to discuss with one another, in regard to the forum's topic, we need more men interested.